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    Jackson Harding

    Nicola Roxon has just been banging on about how committed the Government is to reducing tobacco use and how (as we all know) that there is no safe level of tobacco use. As a medical practitioner I applaud her sentiments.

    Despite all the hype why then does the Government still subsidise the purchase of tobacco at the border? The duty free allowance on tobacco products granted to inbound travellers is nothing more than a slap in the face for those attempting to limit the harm tobacco does. Despite repeated letters to both Roxon and the Minister for Home Affairs on this issue I have only ever got one reply, a boilerplate reply from some low level flunky on behalf of Minister Roxon. To actually do something about it is simple, it requires no legislation, just a simple regulatory change to reduce the amount of tobacco allowed to zero.

    Jackson Harding

  2. 2

    ron batagol

    Just watched the debate. Unless I missed something, next to nothing about Aged Care and nothing at all about e-health! How come these important issues weren’t raised or debated?

  3. 3

    Jenny Haines

    It would be hard in one question and answer session to cover all of the problems in the health system, there are so many and they are so complex. Then there is the questions that arise out of the proposed restructuring. But some questions (other than those proposed by Prue Power) would be:
    1.Given that whichever party wins government, we are likely to move towards a national health system, largely Federally funded, what guarantees do voters have that such restructuring will improve the quality of services and patient outcomes? We will still have shortages of doctors and nurses ( at least for some years to come). We will still have shortages of beds. We will still have long surgical waiting lists.So what guarantees are there that after all of the restructuring involved, that there will be a better system and better outcomes?
    Rationale for this question: Having been through endless restructuring of the health system in NSW and having heard endless promises of improvement, we are still facing huge problems. Why is the proposed national health reform any different?
    2.We need to get the balance right between community based services, hospital beds and health promotion in terms of meeting people’s need for service and in terms of the appropriate services being available at the right time.There seems to be a difference between the statements of politicians on what the balance should be between these services, and what available funding allows. That difference seems to be based on the hopefulness of a Health Minister versus the economic rationalism of Treasury. What priorities would you as Health Minister place on each of these services and can you forsee that Treasury in your government will support those priorities?

  4. 4


    Julia along with other women on Emily’s List Australia categorically state that they believe in:
    “Choice…We believe women must have control over their own bodies and choices in their lives. Reproductive Freedom empowers women and men to choose if, when and how to begin the important journey into parenthood, without fear of discrimination, coercion or violence.” If the members of Emily’s List Australia genuinely believe that “women must have control over their own bodies and choices” then why at the 11th hour in the last Parliamentary sitting did Emily’s List support Nicola Roxon to remove the rights of pregnant women by the ‘sneaky’ passing of the Determination that veto’s every pregnant woman’s from having control over body and choice in her reproductive life. This sneaky passing of the Determination also enforced veto of Midwives professional autonomy to practice the full scope of their qualifications. What does this mean? It means all pregnant women are now forced to employ a doctor to make decisions for them, decisions about their place of birth and who their maternity service provider will be.

    Why – Julia, Tanya, Penny and Jenny when you are promoted as the four leaders of Emily’s List have you unequivocally agreed that every woman must be ‘signed off’ with the agreement of a doctor for the woman to be able to receive Medicare through the services of a Midwife? Why is your word and publicly recorded ‘belief’ incongruent with your political decisions making? Why are you preventing Australian women from employing a midwife to birth at home? What Julia’s are Mr Dutton’s responses to this discrimination?


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